Author Topic: Tom Wright - "Toltec Shamanism" And Meso-American appropriation  (Read 7496 times)

Offline Ikooko Okurin

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So there's this man named Tom Wright who claims to have been trained by "Toltec Shamans". I actually bought his two books on "a course in shamanism" when I was 16, curious, and clueless. When I read his stuff I noticed it was really just mostly full of concepts from the New Thought spiritual movement started by Phineas Quimby, which I had read stuff on before(can be summed up as "mind over matter" and "think positive" lol). He claims to have physically shifted into a panther for whole week and had gotten stuck in panther form-- even getting almost killed by hunters. There's really nothing Native or "shamanistic" about the contents of the "a course in shamanism" e-book, even back then I was able to see this and it's just sat on my computer since. Even so it's embarrassing that I even laid eyes on it.

It's full of vague meditation and visualization practices and really never says anything about the Toltec culture" he claims taught him.  He even says at some point something along the lines of "The history isn't relevant to this practice". All of it is really just disconnected from where he claims to has learned it. The overall message is positive but it's of course not what he says it is. He's also affiliated with Don Miguel Ruiz, well known fraud here. Tom Wright can be sighted saying this on his website.

Don Miguel Ruiz is a Toltec Warrior, and author of The Four Agreements, and his new book The Fifth Agreement. His life and contribution to others, truly represents the best of Toltec Wisdom. Thank you, don Miguel!
-Tom Wright

 I'm surprised a search on Tom Wright's name here hasn't brought up any results. Perhaps he just hasn't grabbed that much attention.

I'll cite some more of his nonsense.

the Toltecs were a group of humans, not a race of humans. They could have been Mexicans, or Norse Vikings who accidentally landed on the East Coast Of Mexico, and then traveled inland, brave warriors that they were. Or Native Indians to the area. It didn't matter then, what they were, but who they were being, and it doesn't matter what they were now. Anyone who has an energy envelope can practice what The Toltecs knew, and practiced, and though the clear presentation in modern language of A Course In Shamanism
[The super nonsense bolded by me].
This is very similar to how some people try to shoehorn in that maybe the Egyptians weren't really people of Africa, but Caucasians from where ever else. Some mysterious arrival fabrication.

His, as far as I know, complete misuse of the term "Nagual"
Shamanism, goes far beyond the physical extention of our reality, and right into accessing The Infinite. Call that Infinite reality Source, The All That Is, or The Nagual, it cannot be explained, only experienced.

I'm not an expert on Meso-American spirituality of course, but I'm pretty sure Nagual was not the "source or creator or infinite" entity he's using it as. It referred to a person who could shapeshift into animals right or even a witch/magician like person? Perhaps someone a part of the culture or more knowledgeable could shed more light?

Also Affiliated with Alan Shoemaker

Alan Shoemaker is a gifted facilitator for the International Amazonian Shamanism Conference, and an expert on curanderos. I have personally gone to Peru and visited with him, and he is without a doubt the best of guides and a friend. Iquitos would shine less brightly without him!

I could go on and on lol. You can go to Tom Wright's website here:

If This man has already been talked about here I apologize for the clutter, but he's not showing up in any searches.

Hopefully I've contributed something. Thanks!

I accidentally posted the unfinished thread  and can't delete it. Could a mod please delete the previous one?

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Tom Wright - "Toltec Shamanism" And Meso-American appropriation
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2015, 01:41:53 am »
He has his hands all over a series of vague positive thinking cash making schemes. Wright makes a lot of claims, some unlikely or at least exaggerations.

Interviewed by Newsweek, AOL America Online, Essence, Lowes, and Sedona (appearing on cover) for the work he does....Tom Wright, Author/Inventor.

 · Executive Director and coursework creator The Mastery Project, conducted with prison inmates in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Texas.
 · Licensed Avatar© Master, worldwide transformational seminar series.
 · Guest Seminar Leader, Landmark Educational Corporation, empowering participants to breakthrough throughout the world.
 · Staff member in New York and San Francisco, The Six Day intensive life altering courses.
 · Forum© Leaders program participant by invitation.
 · Communications aide to presidents Richard M. Nixon and Gerald R. Ford in a non-political capacity.
 · Awarded Presidential Service Citation.
 · Professor of English, science fiction and short story writer, published poet nominated for The Pushcart Prize In Poetry.
 · Executive Editor at Xerox Corporation, editor at The Texas Review, editor of The Alfred Review.
 · Business owner, The Wright Builders, Inc., and ABI, A Better Inspection.
 · Founding Member and President of the board, The Katuah Sudbury School in Asheville, NC.
 · Seventh degree black belt and teacher of martial arts.
 · Published Writer, Acronyming POWER Your Life! and Be BAD! Do Good! How To Get What You Want In Spite Of Yourself!
 · Coursework creator The One Penny Millionaire!™ (
 · Licensed Practitioner for the teachings of the Science of Mind.
 · Healer, and practitioner of Toltec energy shamanism.
Tom Wright currently resides in beautiful Asheville, N.C. with his daughter and son.
Specialties: Results Breakthrough Work, Consulting, and Coaching. Your success is my success!(c)

Owner The One Penny Millionaire! (tm) January 2008 – Present (7 years 8 months)
Seminar Presentation: Personal Transformation.

Owner One Penny Millionaire!(tm) January 1968 – Present (47 years 8 months)
Seminars and Books for your Abundance! It's your abundance, get used to it!

?Education Sam Houston MA English, English 1980 – 1998

Author Tom Wright found at

Activities and Societies: Editor Texas Review, Alfred Review, and Xerox Corporation Assistant To The Editor, Nominated for Pushcart Prize In Poetry, James Dickey Newsletter contributor, Writer, two published books, White House Communications Aide, Co-Founder Katuah Sudbury School For Children

Some additional claims:
Tom Wright GSL, MBB, MC, MA, and of course, Father!....
Main Areas: Transformation
Best Sellers: ZEN GEM and Be BAD! Do Good! How To Get What You Want In Spite Of Yourself!
Career Focus: Writing, Seminars, Speaking
Affiliation: SOM, Avatar, Stars Edge, Landmark, The One Penny Millionaire!™, A Course In Shamanism, Toltec Wisdom....

Tom Wright overcame tremendous odds growing up in a life threatening environment overrun by racially charged violence in the 1960s....A student of Ancient Toltec Wisdom, Ernest Holmes work, and the martial arts, Mr. Wright is a respected Science of Mind licensed practitioner....he enjoyed a long and distinguished career as a practical personal growth trainer, professional communicator and writer. Early in his career, Tom Wright was a professor of English and he served as a communications aide to two U.S. Presidents. For the latter, he was awarded a Presidential Service Citation.

§        Presidential Service Citation: Gerald Ford, 1974 for communications.
§        Licensed Practitioner, Science of Mind
§        Executive Director and coursework creator for The Mastery Project, conducted with prison inmates in
          Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Texas
§        Licensed Avatar© Master, Worldwide Transformational Seminar Series
§        Guest Seminar Leader, Landmark Educational Corporation
§        Staff member, The Six Day Intensive, Life-altering courses, in New York and San Francisco
§        Invited to speak at the International Amazonian Conference On Shamanism, Mr. Wright is an
          internationally recognized shaman, rain maker, and speaker.
§        Co-Founder and President Of The Board, Katuah Sudbury School.
§        Participant, (By Invitation Only) Forum Leader Program, in recognition of transformational skills
§        Business Owner, The Wright Builders, Inc.
§        Business Owner, ABI Licensed Home Inspection Service
§        Editor, The Texas Review and The Alfred Review
§        Executive Editor, Xerox Corporation
§        Practitioner ancient Toltec wisdom.

....published a series of personal growth-oriented books, including Acronyming Power, Acronyming Power II, and Be BAD! Do Good How To Get What You Want In Spite Of Yourself! (St. Pauls Press/India international sales), One, How To Change Your Life Completely In Ten Seconds, The Answer, and How Anger Makes Me Happy! All of which are available both on The One Penny Millionaire!™ website, on Amazon, and on Kindle. He was also nominated for The Pushcart Prize in poetry. He founded The Wright Builders, Inc., and co-founded the Katuah Sudbury School for Children in Asheville, North Carolina, as well as TwIxSilver Press.

Katuah Sudbury School is permanently shut down after perhaps five years existing. All the sites show it never having more than a dozen student and three teachers.

Amazon only has one of his "books" which is really closer to an overpriced pamphlet. The sole review is amusing.
"its a book, what do you want from it? It wont solve your problems , but it is easy reading."

One of his self published books is endorsed by fraud Alan Shoemaker and that Amazonian faux shaman seminar posing as a conference. We have a thread on Shoemaker. Wright has this bizarre disclaimer:

I have found it necessary to provide the following disclaimer because of the experiences of my editor and staff, who upon reading this work before this disclaimer was added, would call me up with tales of the most astounding dreams and experiences. Nothing in this work, or in any of the work of A Course In Shamanism, should be detrimental in any way to either the practitioner or to anyone around her or him. In light of this desire for nurturance from this work, the suggestion is to put up your shields before you begin reading.

Circle yourself with a perfect sphere of indestructible, impenetrable, and eternal Sourced love and light that lets in only pure, positive, love and light Sourced energy and lets out only pure, positive, love and light Sourced energy and anything negative not needed for your path-with-heart. Speak these words out loud and intend their reality with all the energy you can generate. Do this with all the love you can muster: feel it, create it, and with that much love, you will always, and in all ways, be safe.

A Course In Shamanism,Twixsilver Press, and its affiliates, inheritors, and employees are not, and never have been, responsible for any and all choices or effects that you may encounter. Your life in its complete entirety is something that you, and you alone, are completely and wholly responsible for. You hereby release A Course In Shamanism, Twixsilver Press, all employees, affiliates, and inheritors, from any legal redress that would seek damages for any and all experiences, physical harm, or psychological harm claimed, imagined, or experienced. Your agreement to this statement is demonstrated by your reading any further.

Wright claims to have been doing his pennymillionaire bit since 1968. I doubt it's effective, since he also says he was a presidential aide for 5 years and an English professor for 18 years. Judging by his appearance he's a retired senior. My guess is the self help stuff is money on the side supplementing his pension as a professor.

The presidential aide claim is overblown. Obviously he was not a major advisor to Nixon, perhaps lower level staff or even an intern early or prior to his academic career.

The Pushcart prize nomination is no big deal. Anyone nominate anyone. I didn't see any rules against self nomination.

The claim of having been surrounded by racial violence is bizarre. Obviously he's white, and claiming persecution by those awful dark skinned people...In another account he claims to be from the ghetto!

Wright Builders and ABI are construction and home inspection companies. I'd bet he makes far more than from them than the shamanism self help become-a-millionaire bit.

Basically a retired prof who fell for the Four Agreements nonsense.

Offline writerman

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Re: Tom Wright - "Toltec Shamanism" And Meso-American appropriation
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2016, 09:53:54 pm »
I have always found the 'MIND' or opinions, to be so fascinating. Here some comments were posted, entirely based on some 'thoughts' that came into a person's head, and then responded to by that 'thinker' and then even others, as if those thoughts were actually real. Without knowing my background, without knowing truth, and without even asking, assumptions were made, opinions given, and lo and behold everything must be false then! This is an example of exactly how discrimination and prejudice work, when people make assumptions about other people, and then act, and then get others to act, as if those assumptions were accurate. Shame on you. Tom Wright.

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Tom Wright - "Toltec Shamanism" And Meso-American appropriation
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2016, 04:33:10 pm »
Mr. Wright, perhaps instead of throwing a fit with childish insults (shame on you) you could better help yourself by answering questions and making it clearer who you are and what you do (and have done).

Shame on you also for portraying criticism of your fraudulent activities as "prejudice." Anyone who has experienced actual prejudice, which includes most of us here, know better.

Why do you believe in the fraud put out by Ruiz and his Four Agreements falsehoods? Were you unaware the Toltecs have been gone for eight centuries? Now that you know he's an imposter, will that change your practices?

Just how much do you make from your various businesses? Do you know that Natives consider it unethical to make others pay to pray, esp with false versions like Ruiz's?

Can you clear up your vague claims like being "aide" to a president? That could mean anything from a Kissinger-like right hand man to the intern who makes copies and fetches coffee.

Offline Ikooko Okurin

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Re: Tom Wright - "Toltec Shamanism" And Meso-American appropriation
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2016, 04:24:31 pm »

I find it very weird how you actually speak like this in your communications with people...this is the same language you use in your Course in Shamanism book lol. I'm 21 now and looking back I'm just glad I had sense enough when I was 16 not to fall for such junk. If you are really the man you say then "act" and reveal information supporting your claims or...since you likely cannot do that, admit it's fraudulence. If what you say is true it's really not difficult to shut us up is it? In fact from what you "teach" it's your duty to "expand our awareness"...isn't it?

Offline onlyhereonce

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Re: Tom Wright - "Toltec Shamanism" And Meso-American appropriation
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2016, 02:58:14 pm »
Well, I actually know Tom Wright.  The only good thing I can say about him is that he's not a fraud in the sense that he actually seems to believe that he is a healer and a shaman.  He is probably the most delusional human being I have ever met -- and that includes my schizophrenic cousin, who at least admitted he had issues.

As for some of his claims, they are, at best, dishonest.  Professor?  Most likely he taught a few courses while getting his MA.  That does not make you a professor.  Currently he is unemployed, living off lottery winnings.  Yeah, lottery.  The penny millionaire apparently needed a back-up plan.  I also know he was eager to land a job at a local martial arts studio, but not only were there many complaints about him from parents when he would help out in kid's classes, but he eventually ended up getting thrown out of the dojo because he was so disliked.  The precipitating cause of his removal was when he physically hurt a woman who had asked him to be gentle, because she had a minor injury.  After he was finished with her she was out for around six months.  The master of the school had no intention of hiring him even before that, but Mr. Wright ensured that would never happen anyway.

Mr. Wright is in deep denial about his anger issues.  He passes himself off as a healer, but he was too rough with pretty much everyone at the dojo.  By the way, he is not a seventh degree black belt.  He's a second degree.  He at least claims to have put in the requisite time to achieve seventh degree, but my guess is that this was not the first martial arts school he was asked to leave, and he has never actually been promoted beyond second degree.  If he had, believe me, he would have made everyone at the school knew it.

I could go into more detail, but I'll leave it here, as probably no one will read this even if they do, no one much cares.  I'll only add that if Mr. Wright actually shapeshifts, I would love to know what happens to his colostomy bag while he's a panther.